Dreaming about… open shelving

Even though the kitchen has to still wait till I’ll be able to begin any renovation, as my Mom’s bedroom is first on the list, I does not stop me from thinking a lot about it. It will be a huge project, as I have to combine it with the living room make over. It will take a lot of time, effort and probably money, so I guess I will get to it someday in the early spring.

But to sweeten the waiting time, I will share some ideas that pop up in my head. First, what it is like now:

old kitchen

The cupboards are older than me… But we can’t afford getting new ones, so it will be a lot of playing around it, using what we have and making smart choices. I want to get rid of everything above the counter.

old kitchen

To the right is a very strange, wasted space leading to my Mom’s bedroom. The division from the rest of the living room made some sense 20 years ago, but not anymore.

old kitchen

The other side of this weird room/hallway next to the kitchen, DIY-ed by my Mom with furniture… all of it has to go!

And now some examples of spaces that make me smile and inspire me:

Open shelving

I would like to use as much open shelving as possible. It opens up the small space, forces you to edit your stuff and makes even ordinary things into decorating objects. I am not sure if the under-counter open shelving will be an option in our situation, but for sure wall shelves are realistic.

Open shelving

I love how the open shelving and glass doors open up the space. I also like the nice crisp whiteness of the shelves contrasted with darker wall’s color. I am planning on painting walls in the kitchen vibrant, red (with slight terracotta shade).

dining nook

But what I am missing the most is a nice, cozy dining space. I want to use the space by the window, to create a place for four diners. A round table would probably work best, but this one above is also beautiful. I am still not sure what style I want, that will probably come up later.

dining nook by a window

I love this clean, inviting dining place. I would love to create something like this in my space.

Let’s see a few more photos of inspiring kitchen spaces:

Open shelving and dining nook

Open shelving and vibrant colors

Simply stunning! I wish I could use such dark colors, but I am not living alone ;-)

Just add color :)

I can't stand the color, but love the lively vibe


Welcome to my childhood home

After many years of travels, studies and work abroad I am back to my old apt. I grew up here, and lived here till the age of 18… After that I visited but never lived here longer than a few weeks at a time. I am not sure how long I will stay here, but long enough to invest my time, sweat and limited financial resources in making it nice.

In addition to selfish wish to live in a nice place, I also want to do the revolution for my Mom, who is overworked, tired and far from wealthy. Most of the work that has been done to this place was a cover up, touching up and camouflaging more than renovating. I want to make a beautiful nest for her, she diserve it much more than I do.

So… let’s begin! We need to get to know the place and see what we are dealing with. As I moved in about three weeks ago and have managed to do some changes, I will show you first what it looked like when I first came back.

In this post I will show only a photo per room or space, more photos in detailed, dedicated posts.

  Hallway, looking right from the entry. My Mom is really proud of the faux stone wall paper. It’s been done pretty recently, and I will get to it toward the end, there are much higher priority rooms on the list.


Bathroom – tiny, really tiny. Many things (gas heater, cupboards) are from the very beginning, so they are 30+ years old… the vinyl wall paper is pretty new . the faux wooded covers are done by my dad and are living proof of his lack of talent in home repairs ;-)







Living room. It used to be a bigger, open room but my Mom divided it ages ago, it was a good idea at the time, now not really needed. Because of it we dont’ have a real dinning space. I think the room is really nice, and if you knew anything about the typical design style among Poles of my Mom’s generation, you would appreciate its warmth and decor. The problem is eclectic overkill. There are some awesome art pieces (by local folk artists), but also some totally ugly knick knacks. My Mom has also a good green tumb, and decorating with plants is pretty common in Poland. It would be difficult to find an apt without plants!

I love the wall clock… its sound was with me since childhood. It has this deep, old-world ring to it… It must have a central place!

These are the bookshelves used as room dividers. I am planning to throw them away, or remake and use in a different place. I will decide when I get here. As you can see there is a lot of books (that’s only a small part after my Mom already gave away a few hundreds!)

 Kitchen. Tiny! almost everything is old and crappy. the tiles were placed by my father and are not only ugly but also not even. Did I say crappy and ugly? And again attack of the faux wood slate! YUCK. But it will have to wait a bit…

 Kitchen from the other side. There used to be a tiny breakfast nook, but anyway with time it became a storage place for discarded furniture and everything else… It will all go away and we will have a nice dinning nook once again!






Now off to my Mom’s bedroom. It used to my parents’ room, but it was always left behind as the room that no one can see, so it hasn’t seen any renovation in ages! At some places you can see wallpaper that is older than I am… which is scary. My Mom created by herself a kind of walk-in-closet, dividing room with old closets. It used to work well, but with time my Mom, who used to work 11h/day (!!!) simply had no strenght to organize and clean there… so she stopped using it, preparing all she needed in the home office. I am planning to make for her a real haven, a place to rest and restore. She deserves it!










Behind this curtain on the left is the attempt at DIY closet organizing. I will try and make something really helpful that will also look great.








…and back to the hallway, we will go to the left from the entry. ON the left is my old bedroom, which will be now office, and on the right used to be my brother’s bedroom then home office and will be my bedroom.

I will describe in details the origins of this ugliness in a separate post…

the other room – slightly bigger, but stilll. A lot of old, discarded furniture, a hodgpodge of randomness and ugliness. This will be my bedroom soon!